The Importance of Perspective

One of the things I value most in life is perspective. I find perspective to be a thing of beauty. Perspective is defined by Merriam-Webster as “the interrelation in which a subject or its parts are mentally viewed”. I am truly amazed by how different life experiences, beliefs, and values impact the way someone views a situation. Sadly, I do not feel as if perspective is something that is truly appreciated here in The United States. This is a real problem in our culture and one that I believe really hinders us from being able to really help those in need, specifically Syria and Syrian refugees.

I am not sure I really understand why Americans do not have much of an appreciation for perspective. I am sure a lot of it has to do with our mentality of trying to be right all the time, and believing that we know what is best for everyone else. We do not want to take the time to understand and get to know another side of a situation, we would just rather assume however we view something is the only way it can be viewed.

The Syrian refugee crisis is one of those issue that most Americans do not want to take the time to fully understand. They would just rather watch nightly news clips about ISIS and the fighting in Syria and assume that all Syrians are terrorist or causing conflict. This causes our perspectives on the Syrian refugee crisis to be shaped by fear, not by knowledge. Fear simply distorts our perspectives and hinders us from gaining a pure understanding of the situation.

As a whole, America has done very little to advocate or help Syrian refugees. It pains me to know that over the past four years America has taken in just 4,000 Syrian refugees, a country of our size could be doing so much more to help in the Syrian refugee crisis. What is even more troubling is that it seems for the most part Americans are okay with the amount of effort we have been putting into resolving the issue. I hope that in the coming year as we elect a new leader and start to pass new policies America’s mentality with shift to one of service. I don’t think this can happen though until Americans start opening their minds and taking time to understand others perspectives on the situation. Everyone has a different input to offer, if we take the time to appreciate this I believe America could have a real impact on the Syrian refugee crisis. So I want to challenge you to start emphasizing the importance of perspective when you discuss topics such a Syria and refugees as a whole. We need to start to understanding the whole situation, taking time to gain new perspectives can help us achieve this.

-Tyler Burgess-


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